Role of schoolyards in green cities focus of next AIPH Green City Briefing

The sixth AIPH Green City Briefing will showcase the role of schoolyards in becoming transformative spaces for climate-ready cities with cohesive communities. Registrations are open for this online webinar, which takes place at 1pm GMT on 21st March 2023.

Organised by the International Association of Horticultural Producers (AIPH) in collaboration with the Worshipful Company of Gardeners (WCoG) and sponsor Expo 2023 Doha Qatar, the AIPH Green City Briefings 2022/23 are a series of one-hour webinars focusing on cities around the world that demonstrate significant progress in including plants and nature in their city’s form and function.

Paris, France, winner of the Living Green for Social Cohesion category of the AIPH World Green City Awards 2022, is the feature city for this briefing. The city’s winning initiative, the Oasis Schoolyard’s project, launched in 2018 seeks to transform existing outdoor spaces through renewing and greening all 770 schoolyards by 2050. The project responds simultaneously to multiple urban issues such as thermal conditions, lack of green areas within the city, and the design of appropriate public spaces for children growing up in the city. This includes action for work in community cohesion improvement, which is achieved by providing the local community with free access to the schoolyards on Saturdays. By December 2021, 72 schoolyards had been transformed.

Dominic Regester of Salzburg Global Seminar will MC the webinar. He is Director of Education and Director of the Center for Education Transformation at Salzburg Global Seminar, where he is responsible for designing, developing and implementing programs on the futures of education.

Joining Dominic is Heidi Campbell, Senior Program Manager for Evergreen (Canada). Heidi is a design professional and educator who specialises in participatory planning and design approaches for healthy, inclusive neighbourhoods. She leads iterative placemaking processes that engage the public in realising vibrant, resilient spaces for their communities.

Raphaëlle Thiollier, Service Designer on school architecture in Paris, is the second speaker for the briefing and will introduce to the online audience the featured city project. Since 2009, Raphaëlle has worked for the City of Paris. She was a member of the Parisian Resilience team and is currently the Oasis Schoolyards Project Manager.

The subject of this webinar, as with all of the AIPH Green City Briefings 2022-23, resonates with the theme of sponsor Expo 2023 Doha, Qatar, in showing a commitment to creating better spaces for city residents. Recognising that community engagement is part of success, Expo 2023 Doha Qatar motivates that without a change in the mindset of the people and their perspectives on the future, the sustainability of any endeavour would not be possible. City greening, particularly in arid climates, is an increasingly urgent topic, because it can be an answer to global water, energy, and food scarcity problems. Expo 2023 Doha Qatar is open from 2 October 2023 to 28 March 2024 and anticipates 3 million local and international visitors.

For more information and to register, visit the AIPH Website.